Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Film Review: Untamed (1955)

Very . . . interesting . . .
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TCMDb: When the great potato famine hits Ireland, the diaspora begins as thousands emigrate. Among those leaving the Emerald Isle is Katie O'Neill and her husband, who decide that the promised land is South Africa and make their way there. Once there, they discover the hardships that are the reality of the homesteader experience. To complicate matters, Katie meets up with the love of her life, Paul van Riebeck. Will there be betrayal on the veldt?

     This is an oddball of a film in my opinion, and it's simply that way because of the subject matter. However, the acting, the direction, and the storyline itself are all top-notch.
     I've been a fan of the classics now going on three years, and while I love to watch all the classic movies that I can, like everybody, I have my favorites, and because of that I tend to stick to them for the majority of the time. That is part of the reason as to why I started doing my Star of the Month and their essentials--to get me out there and try watching different films from different actors and actress repoitoire that I might not have watched before. By doing this, I've discovered some wonderful actors and films.
Tyrone, Susan, and Agnes Moorehead.
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     This is one of those films.
     Untamed is a film that I would've loved to have been on myself, simply for the adventure. For a film to make me want to do that it's got to be pretty good for hardly ever do I really want to go anywhere and stay there for an extended trip--I'm a homebody, and proud of it. I wouldn't have minded being on this set, however, it would've been fun! (I also would've loved to have been on the set of The African Queen, wouldn't that have been a hoot and a half?)
     The one part that I loved about this film, despite it being so . . . different, is is the pairing of Tyrone Power and Susan Hayward. They worked so well together. This film was one of six remaining films that Tyrone made a few years before his untimely death in 1958, and I only wish that they had been able to work in one more film together.
Henry King directing Tyrone and Susan.
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     Susan Hayward, as I keep finding out as I watch her films, is perfect. She's tough, she's strong, and she knows what she wants. Mostly she's a woman that all other women should look up to. There are few parts in the film in which I don't entirely agree with her motives, but I'm always rooting for her so that in the end she'll get her man--which is in all reality all she wants.
     There wasn't a moment where I found myself bored as I viewed this film. It had too many exciting parts for me. It seems to me that this film is so action-packed and that it's got an exotic setting, South Africa, though it first starts off in Ireland, you don't really get to see much of it (which is about the only shameful thing that I could find about the movie), that you would think that it would be on DVD, but it's not. I'll never understand how some films that are so terrible that if you watch them you should wear a paper bag over your head--even in your own home--wind up on DVD, but a movie like this which has actully has a story to it, fantastic actors, and scenery which in itself is a feast for the eyes aren't on DVD.
Aw, ain't that sweet? Tyrone with his daughter, Romina, on
the set of Untamed.
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     I suggest this movie to anybody that wants to watch something a little different, something that they haven't seen before, any Tyrone Power fan--ooh, what a handsome fellow he was, but because of his striking good looks, he was rarely was taken seriously in his films, which I find a great shame, and of course, any Susan Hayward fan.
     I give this film a 3/4 stars.


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